|Course||Breakfast or snack|
|Place of origin||Paraguay|
|Main ingredients||Cassava or corn flour, cheese|
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (April 2012)|
Chipa is a type of small, baked, cheese-flavored rolls, a popular snack and breakfast food in Paraguay and northern Argentina. Its origin is uncertain; it is speculated[by whom?] that the recipe has existed since the eighteenth century. It is inexpensive and often sold from streetside stands and on buses by vendors carrying a large basket with the warm chipa wrapped in a cloth.
The original name is from Guarani chipa (Guaraní pronunciation: [tʃiˈpa]). It is also known as chipa, chipacito or chipita and in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia, the term cuñapé (Guarani) is often used. The pan de yuca in Ecuador and Colombia and pan de bono in Colombia are both very similar to chipa.
Chipa is distinctive not only because they are made of cassava or corn flour, but also because the inside is chewy and moist. Its size may range from 2 cm to 15 cm (1 to 6 inches) in diameter and approximately 5 cm (2 inches) in height and it is made in many different shapes and styles.
Chipá has been prepared in the Guarani region (northern Argentina, Paraguay and areas of Brazil) since humans settled in the area. During inception, the Guarani people prepared it only with cassava starch and water. After the arrival of the colonists and Jesuit missionaries, and with the introduction of cattle, chickens  and new products derived from this livestock (like cheese and eggs), chipá began to gradually evolve into the widely-used recipe of the early 21st century.
The most frequent variety of chipá is made from cassava and corn flour, milk, cheese, eggs and lard or oil (occasionally, anise seeds are added). The dough is then formed into rings and baked. The lightness of the cassava starch, which is thinly milled, gives the bread a special texture. Cuñape uses the same ingredients as chipá but in different proportions.
Paraguay and Northeastern Argentina
In the Guaraní region, chipá is often baked in smaller doughnuts or buns that may be called chipa'í or chipacitos. These are sold in small bags by street sellers of big cities and small towns. In the preparation of chipa yeast is not used, so in spite of the high temperatures of the region it can be preserved for many days. It is a festive food and can be found in every popular religious celebration.
Other common variants in Paraguay include the chipa caburé or chipá mbocá (cooked around a stick, in consequence it doesn't have the spongy inner center) and the chipa so'ó, filled with ground meat. There are other varieties of chipa with different ingredients; chipa manduvi (made with a mix of corn flour and peanut), chipá avatí and chipa rora (made of the skin of the seed of corn after being strained, like a whole-wheat bread). A dish called chipa guasu or chipá guazú ("chipa grande", "big chipa" in English) is made with ground corn and lard and is baked in a pan. The result is a savory, gooey cornbread.
Called cuñapé, they are made of either cassava or maize flour. Cuñapés are usually baked in the mornings and sold later on the streets, while being transported in polystyrene containers. Such vendors can also be found in bus terminals and near popular areas of the cities and even rural towns. A medium-sized piece of chipa generally sells (as of 2006) for roughly 25 cents (in American dollars).
- Elichondo, Margarita: La comida criolla: Memoria y recetas. Popular Culture Library, Editions of EL SOL, 2003 (ISBN 950-9413-76-3) (Restricted online copy at Google Books)
- Ministry of Social Development (President of Argentina): "Sabores con sapucay", Rescatando lo autóctono desde la historia familiar.
- (Miró Ibars, 2001: 84)
- Chipa: Pan Sagrado and 70 Recipes to prepare it.
- "Tembi’u Paraguay" Josefina Velilla de Aquino
- "Karú rekó – Antropología culinaria paraguaya", Margarita Miró Ibars